Monday, 24 September 2007

objection to the new AWE planning aplication

Regarding the Burghfield Plan/app. for staff restaurant and conference room

I object to any new building at AWE, especially in the light of recent safety concerns in the New Scientist. The visual appearance is damaging to the beautiful surroundings, a blot on the landscape. The environmental impact is of great concern, as is the expected increase in traffic. I call for a public inquiry into this application, on the grounds that sufficient detailed information about the serious risks to health and safety involved in the preparation of the site for construction has not been provided by the applicant.

Risk 1 - radiation*: HM Inspectors (Nuclear Installations Inspectorate) have been consulted on this application, which suggests that that there is a radiation risk to this activity, however this is not disclosed on the application;

Risk 2 – explosion*: The Land Contamination Statement states that contamination has been found, and that there is a “high” risk of explosion during excavation of the site, including a risk of explosion from residue in drains and from disturbing buried ordnance.

Risk 3 - contamination* - the redundant buildings may have contaminated the ground and both surface and groundwater is at risk. What are the dangers involved in the remediation works needed in advance of construction to remove contamination from the site?

Risk 4: radioactive waste. No indication is given in the application about the storage on site of low-level radioactive waste materials from redundant buildings and excavated materials

Risk 5 - flooding - in light of the recent floods in the area (including Burghfield) what precautions have been taken in planning drainage, to avoid flooding and contamination, as mercury - probably from the existing manufacturing facility has contaminated the groundwater in the past.

I believe that:
· the MoD should not be allowed to proceed with this scheme, which proposes that they would monitor such risks “as they go along”; [you could add .. especially in view of the recent report in the New Scientist that Burghfield have been unable to comply with instructions form the NII to rectify known faults, how can they be trusted to remedy risks they discover as they go along with the new build)
· that it is not acceptable to allow developments which are likely to cause serious health and safety risks without those risks being identified, managed, controlled and removed before development
· this application should be called in for a public inquiry on the grounds that sufficient detailed information about the serious risks to health and safety has not been provided by the applicant.

See for the latest bad news of safety fears in the New Scientist after freeedom of information requests revelations.

PLEASE WRITE TO** (Quoting Application Number: 07/01686/COMIND)

Clive Inwards, Senior Planning Officer
Fax: 01635-519408

By post:
Clive Inwards, Planning Officer, Council Offices, Market Street, Newbury,RG14 5LD,
Tel: 01635 519111

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